Sinclair kicking ball past sliding defender

Christine Sinclair

Canadian Olympic Medal Count

Gold medal icon 0
Silver medal icon 0
Bronze medal icon 2

Biography

Christine Sinclair is the most successful soccer player to ever compete for Canada. She made her debut with the senior national team as a 16-year-old at the 2000 Algarve Cup where she also scored her first international goal. Since then, she has accumulated more than 185 international goals, making her the highest scoring player – man or woman – in the world. She is also the active leader in international caps with 299 and counting.

Sinclair has competed at three Olympic Games, winning back-to-back bronzes at London 2012 and Rio 2016. At London 2012 she was the tournament’s leading scorer with six of Canada’s 12 goals, including a hat truck in the controversial semifinal extra-time loss to the United States. For her efforts, she was named Canada’s Closing Ceremony flag bearer and was awarded the Lou Marsh Award as the Canadian Athlete of the Year, becoming the first soccer player to win. Sinclair scored three goals at Rio 2016, including what turned out to be the game-winner in a 2-1 victory over Brazil in the bronze medal match. 

Sinclair first came to national prominence during the 2002 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championships in Edmonton where she won the Golden Boot as the tournament’s leading scorer with 10 goals (including five against England) and the Golden Ball as tournament MVP as Canada finished second. A year later she competed at her first of five FIFA Women’s World Cups, scoring three goals and helping Canada reach the bronze medal game. In 2011, she showed her determination to compete after breaking her nose in Canada’s opening match, forcing her to wear a face mask for the rest of the tournament. In 2015, Sinclair led Canada in scoring as they reached the quarterfinals on home soil. When she scored in Canada’s final group stage match of 2019, she became just the second player in history to score a goal in five World Cups.

Sinclair has also competed in two Pan American Games for Canada, winning bronze at Rio 2007 and gold at Guadalajara 2011. She was second in tournament scoring in her first appearance, netting two hattricks during group play. In Guadalajara she scored the game-tying goal in the 87th minute of the gold medal match against Brazil. Canada would win on penalties.

Some of Sinclair’s other international achievements with the Canadian Women’s National Team include a 2016 Algarve Cup title, 2015 Four Nations gold medal, and a pair of Cyprus Cups in 2008 and 2011.

While playing for the University of Portland, Sinclair was a four-time All-American, the 2001 NCAA Freshman of the Year, scored the golden goal at the 2002 NCAA Championships, and won back-to-back Hermann Trophies as soccer player of the year in 2004 and 2005.  In her senior year she set the NCAA D1 record with 39 goals in a season, won her second NCAA title, and was awarded the Honda-Broderick Cup as the college woman athlete of the year.

Sinclair turned pro in 2008 and joined FC Gold Pride of the WPS in the USA, winning the regular season and playoff titles in her second year. She moved to the Western New York Flash in 2011 and won the regular season and playoff titles again while being named MVP of the WPS Championship Final. She joined Portland Thorns FC of the NWSL in 2013 and won another championship. In 2017 she broke the league record for playoff goals, leading the Thorns to their second ever NWSL title. 

In 2017, Sinclair was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2012, she was awarded her first Bobbie Rosenfeld Award as Canada’s Female Athlete of the Year. In 2020, she became the first team sport athlete to win that honour twice. She was inducted to Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2013. Sinclair has been named Canada Soccer’s Female Player of the Year 14 times, including 11 straight from 2004 to 2014, and was named the Player of the Decade in 2019. She was named to the CONCACAF Woman Team of the Decade for 2011-20 and is a multiple time nominee for FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year. 

A Little More About Christine

Getting into the Sport: Started playing soccer and baseball at age 4 because her brother played and she wanted to do everything he did… Outside Interests: Enjoys playing golf… Graduated from the University of Portland in 2005 with a degree in Life Science… Received an Honourary Doctorate of Laws from Simon Fraser University in 2013… Supports the MS Society of Canada… Odds and Ends: Nickname: Sinc… Was featured alongside Lionel Messi on the cover of FIFA 16 video game in Canada… Appeared with teammate Kadeisha Buchanan on a postage stamp in 2015, commemorating the World Cup hosted by Canada… In June 2021, her hometown of Burnaby, BC announced they would rename the local sport and health facility to the Christine Sinclair Community Centre…

Olympic Highlights

Games Sport Event Finish
Beijing 2008Football (Soccer)Women8
London 2012Football (Soccer)WomenBronze
Rio 2016Football (Soccer)WomenBronze

Notable International Results

Olympic Games: 2016 - BRONZE; 2012 - BRONZE; 2008 - 8th  

Pan American Games: 2011 - GOLD; 2007 - BRONZE

FIFA World Cup: 2019 - Rnd of 16; 2015 – QF; 2011 – group stage; 2007 – group stage; 2003 – 4th

CONCACAF Championship (Gold Cup): 2018 - SILVER; 2010 - GOLD; 2006 - SILVER; 2002 - SILVER; 2000 - 4th